Technology & Innovation

ABB, a Swiss technology leader in industrial automation and power grids, will present papers on its latest sensor technology at CIRED 2017 in Glasgow next week. KEVA C, the latest release in ABB’ medium-voltage sensor range, will be showcased at the forum, notably how it can provide highly accurate measurement in secondary gas-insulated switchgear applications.

Accelerated growth of volatile wind and photovoltaic power supply in Germany has been shifting the dispatch of fossil power plants to load-following operation to maintain the stability of the power grid. More decentralized gas-fired stations would help meet TSO’s flexibility requirements, Dr. Thorsten Krol, marketing manager at Siemens’ distributed generation business development told Gas to Power Journal.

As utilities are reworking their businesses models, distributed generation – or producing electricity on-site rather than at a central power plant at another location – and combined heat and power (CHP) is seen as “a particularly advantageous natural gas-fired option,” says Dave McCurdy, president of the American Gas Association (AGA). Further up north in Canada, the Industrial Applications of Gas Turbines (IAGT) will discuss waste-heat absorption, among others, at its annual symposium in Banff in mid-October.

Eager to transform into a data-led technology company, Wärtsilä of Finland has appointed Marco Ryan as new Chief Digital Officer (CDO) to head up a new digital organisation with more than 400 employees. Following a kick-off event in Munich, the Finish manufacturer is launching digital acceleration centres around the globe.

NYMEX-listed Ingersoll-Rand has introduced the RS200 to RS250 models of its product line of oil-flooded rotary screw air compressors. Customers can choose between a single-stage, or a two-stage airend that increases airflow by up to 16%, according to the manufacturer. A variable speed option makes the compressor up to 35% more efficient compared to the industry average.

"General Electric’s LM6000 gas turbine has long been the sales champion of the GE aeroderivative fleet, but the LMS100 is now giving it a run for its money," independent consultant Mark Axford told Gas to Power Journal. The LMS100 beat the LM6000 in total orders for the first time in 2015. This included two installations on behalf of Exelon Medway in Massachusetts, five for Arizona Public Service, five for NRG Energy and four for LNG Canada in British Columbia.

Expanding its offering for distributed power in the low-Megawatt range, Siemens has introduced its new gas engine E-series with a power output of 2MW. The series includes the SGE-86EM for the 50-Hz market, and the SGE-100EM for the 60-Hz market. With this offering, the German manufacturer targets customers in Europe and North America – both have a need for distributed power plants to support the grid-integration of rising volumes renewable energy.

The International Energy Agency’s Tracking Clean Energy Progress (TCEP) has examined the progress of a variety of clean energy technologies towards interim 2°C scenario targets in 2025. Just three out of a total of 26 tracked technologies were classified as “advancing towards a sustainable energy transition”: onshore wind and solar, electric vehicles, and energy storage.

Tantalum, added composite molybdenum silicides helps boost material resilience of turbine blades, as tested by scientists at Kyoto University. Advanced compositions of molybdenum silicides improve the strength of blade materials at temperatures around 1,400 degrees Celsius (°C ). By contrast, nickel-based turbine blades, used in similar combustion systems, already melt at temperatures 200°C, or lower, and require significant air-cooling.

The Finish technology group Wärtsilä has introducing a hybrid and standalone energy storage to the market, combined with engine-based power generation. The company stated is sees “high market potential” in areas with remote microgrids and for solar PV integration.

Nest Learning Thermostat, which partners with utilities to provide residential Demand-Side Response (DRS), shows how bilateral contracts for flexibility services can be utilised for the integration of renewable resources. Their so-called ‘Rush hour rewards’ scheme offers end-customers a menu of contracts with different lead times (from on-demand to 24-hour advance notice), duration of adjustments in electricity consumption (30 mins to 4 hrs) and payments.

US power solutions provider Cummins has launched a new gas generator set across 50Hz regions. Supplying electrical efficiency of up to 43.8%, the upgraded QSK60 gas engine can reduce total cost of ownership for its customers and is particularly tailored towards combined heat and power (CHP) applications.

Siemens and Chromalloy Gas Turbine have joint forces and agreed to invest approximately $130 million to create a new joint venture called Advanced Airfoil Components. The JV will create up to 350 new jobs in the United States and will supply Siemens with turbine blade and vane cast components for power generation. Shipment of initial components is slated for 2018.

ActiveWall and Virtalis’ Visionary Render (VR) software has revolutionised processes at GE’s Swiss manufacturing site as it allows engineers to access and experience a real-time, collaborative, and immersive VR environment created from huge multi-source 3D datasets.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded Wärtsilä with an emissions compliance certificate for its 34DF dual-fuel engine family. The EPA Tier III, and the corresponding EIAPP certificate, were both issued in March covering engines manufactured until the end of 2017.